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Marquez: Difficult to have a long MotoGP career now

Six-time MotoGP world champion Marc Marquez believes the nature of the series now makes long careers unfeasible

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Marc Marquez says “it’s difficult to have a long career” in MotoGP now because the competitive level in the series now is such that maintaining it is harder than before.

Prior to last month’s Catalan Grand Prix, Aleix Espargaro announced that he would be retiring from MotoGP at the end of the 2024 season.

It will bring to an end a grand prix career that began in the 125cc class in 2004, with Espargaro racing in MotoGP consecutively from 2012 to 2024.

Marquez will become the longest-standing rider on the grid next year when he joins the factory Ducati squad, which will mark his 13th campaign in the premier class.

“For me, I think it’s super tricky for the teams,” Marquez said when asked if riders could expect to have careers as long as Espargaro’s.

“Why? Because it looks like in these last years… in the end, the rider makes the difference.

“But it depends a lot on the machine and it looks like the level is super equal.

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing Team

Marc Marquez, Gresini Racing Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

“So, if you check the lap times you see most of the riders deserve [to be in] MotoGP.

“But in the end, also coming from Moto2 there are riders pushing a lot.

“So, it’s difficult to have a long career. It’s the popular sentence: it’s not difficult to arrive, it’s difficult to keep the level.”

In theory, Marquez – who turns 32 next year – could race on for another decade, with Valentino Rossi retiring in 2021 at the age of 42.

Rossi’s grand prix career began in 1996, with a premier class move coming in 2000.

Rossi’s MotoGP career would go on for another 11 years after winning his last championship, while he wouldn’t score a grand prix victory after 2017.

The MotoGP legend – who now races in the World Endurance Championship’s LMGT3 category - went podiumless in his final campaign on the Petronas SRT Yamaha in 2021.

Marquez has gone without a grand prix win since 2021, but has battled ongoing injury woes and uncompetitive Honda machinery in that time.

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